|TRIBUTE TO TERRY BONCHAKA
The Hiplife Warrior
The Musical `Bonchaka` Is No More.
He may not have been the reigning hiplife champion but Terry Bonchaka was indeed reigning in the world of hiplife and was about the hottest artiste on the block.
As he put it "I am not reigning in the championship field now because I have handed over the baton but I am riding on waves and it is a very positive trend in the hiplife world." It sure was a positive trend for the 20-year-old who was the hiplife champion in 2001 when the segment was introduced to Club Pleasure.
He performed at all major events in the country and was good at it, and one cannot begrudge him for saying "I am the hottest stage product." Of all his performances though, Bonchaka said Panafest 2001 and Nite With The Stars 2 were very memorable ones.
Meanwhil,e his debut album Ghana Ladies (Ghana Mmaa), is doing well on the market with both young and old singing Gbeebi Akle wherever one goes. Airplay is understandably massive and Bonchaka said it took a while for the tapes to get on the market but it is really selling now. Possibly a result of finally tying up a good deal with Kaakyire Music Productions.
But is the young afro-haired artiste satisfied with what he has achieved? "What I am doing now is actually a tip of what I can do," was the response of Terry Bonchaka. In June/July 2003, Bonchaka came up with album number two. He was also working on coming out with a new highlife innovation he called Bonchakata.
There seemed to be no stopping for Bonchaka who said he came out with a special single for Valentine's Day which was released on radio in February. For him, it was fun being in the limelight but one cannot have a normal life anymore "because all eyes are on you wherever you go."
The aspirations of Bonchaka were perhaps more than one was anticipating. He hoped to record about 100 songs by the end of next year and then go back to school to read law. He hoped to come out with three or four albums. "It's best to be acceptable in your own country," added Bonchaka who said he initially did not have any plans of releasing any album in Ghana.
Well, he had done just that and it was doing great, he admitted. For him hiplife has a bright future "provided we play our cards well, don't copy blindly, become innovative and creative and make sure we don't neglect our indigenous drums and beats."
Terry Bonchaka did not have a role model but admired Wulomei and James Brown. Is that the reason he kept his hair bushy and preferred old school when it came to fashion? " Yeah, I want to bring the old school fashion back because the old time style is the best." Truth is, his message seemed to be catching on well because young folks in his area have already taken to the Bonchaka style.
Bonchaka was a Ga from La and the third of four children. He attended Ewit Greenwich Classical Academy and Adisadel College (he didnt stop reminding everyone that he was a Santaclausian). Aside music he loved playing table tennis, writing poems and reading the Bible. Though he sang about banku, fufu, gyigyi and the likes, he loved boiled yam and kontomire stew.
As to why he always kept an Afro comb with him (even on stage) and his finger nails very long, Terry simply said "I like it that way." Sure, he may have been cool but was not cool at all with those who used artistes names for promos without contacting them and those who kept artistes running after them for their fees till they gave up.
Hip Life artiste, Terry Bonchaka is dead. He died in the early hours of Friday following a motor accident on the Legon-Tetteh Quarshie road. Terry Bonchaka, known in real life as Terry Adjetey and grandson of the Speaker of Parliament, Peter Ala Adjetey was reported to be on his way home from a performance at the University of Ghana, Legon.
Terry, who was still learning to drive, attempted to overtake a vehicle, but his car skidded off the road and ran into a tree. He was rushed to the 37 Military hospital where he was declared dead.
Terry took the risk to drive, after realizing that his driver was drunk. After an announcement of his death, several Hip Life artistes, radio presenters and fans trooped to the 37 Military Hospital to ascertain the death of the unique-styled artiste.
JOY FMs Bola Ray who was at the morgue confirmed the death. "Its very pathetic, I just came out of the morgue, its indescribable, Ghana has lost a very important personality as far as showbiz is concerned", he noted.
TERRYS RISE TO STARDOM
Terry Adjetey, known in show biz life, as Terry Bonchaka, did not jump into stardom out of the blue. He is the grandson of Ghanas Speaker of Parliament, Peter Ala Adjetey and a Senior Secondary School graduate from Adisadel College in Cape Coast.
Terry Bonchaka started building his music career while in school fully aware of his musical flare. When the organizers of Miss Ghana introduced the Hip Life Amateur Champ Show, Terry filed in and won the Central region Championship. At the finals of the Club Pleasure event, he put up a stunning performance that earned him the title of Hip life champ 2001.
But the unique-styled Hip life artiste really shot into the limelight of the music industry when he featured at the Joy FM "Night with the Stars II" organised last year. Since then, he has thrilled music lovers in Ghana with his peculiar stage performances. Just like TU-Pac of the US, his hit songs promise to register on the minds of his fans even after his death.
Terry Bonchaka has just an album to his credit but his new album, which will be launched, pretty soon has forty tracks. The Akuafo Hall of the University of Ghana, Legon, where he performed on Thursday night before his death, has decided to rebrand the rest of their hall week activities as a tribute to Terry Bonchaka